Illinois news that doesn't fit main categories

Midwest Travel: Bishop Hill For The Holidays

20 hours ago
Bishop Hill Heritage Association

When Swedish religious-freedom seekers spent their first winter huddled in shelters dug into a ravine in what is now Bishop Hill, few probably guessed that, 169 years later, their settlement would host heart-warming winter holiday celebrations.


  For the Community Foundation for the Land of Lincoln, it's all about philanthropy.  

National Weather Service - Lincoln

Forecasters say a mixture of bad weather that could bring tornadoes is expected as a strong storm system plows toward the central U.S. from the Rocky Mountains. 

The Young Philanthropists in Sangamon County has hit the decade mark.  

Abraham Lincoln Presidential Library & Museum

The former mayor of Springfield, Ossie Langfelder, passed away Wednesday morning at the age of 89.

Bill Wheelhouse talks with long time State Journal Register political columnist Bernie Schoenburg about Langfelder.   

Also some oral history audio of Langfelder.

Check out Ossie Langfelder discussing his life.

Do you ever daydream of hiking or biking through Europe but have just a weekend to spare? Then plan a trip to New Glarus, Wisconsin, known as “America’s Little Switzerland,” where you can enjoy scenic trails, indulge your taste for Swiss cheeses and chocolate, and stay at a Swiss-style hotel, bed-and-breakfast or even a guest farm.

Credit David Wilson / davidwilson1949 via

An agreement announced Friday could pave the way for rail traffic in Springfield to be consolidated along 10th Street.


The Director of Downtown Springfield Incorporated plans to leave the job by the end of the year.

Credit Bill Dickinson /

Amtrak says it will stop train service on the route that runs through central Illinois starting October 17.

Sean Crawford/WUIS

An effort is underway to repair one of the few railroad depots remaining in Sangamon County. 

The State Journal-Register reports the newly formed Chatham Railroad Museum Association is raising money to fix the roof and make other improvements to the Chatham Railroad Depot. 

The Village of Chatham owns the structure, which was built in 1902.  But it doesn't have enough money to pay for the estimated $10,00o in needed repairs.

Founder's Residence Hall

Two men have been arrested in connection with Sunday’s stabbing on the University of Illinois Springfield campus.

Founder's Residence Hall

Two people are recovering from stab wounds following an incident on the University of Illinois Springfield campus Sunday afternoon.

Illinois Times

If you are into power trips, you can’t find a better place than central Iowa.

City of Springfield

News release from City of Springfield issued Friday 9/4/15:

Springfield, Illinois – Mayor Jim Langfelder announced today Robert “Barry” Helmerichs as the new Chief for the Springfield Fire Department.

Helmerichs joined the Springfield Fire Department in 1991 and served as a firefighter, driver-engineer, captain, deputy chief of technical services, and division chief in addition to serving as a faculty member with the fire science program at Lincoln Land Community College.  He was appointed Fire Chief in 2010 under then-Mayor Tim Davlin.

Midwest Travel: Religion And History Meet In Nauvoo

Aug 31, 2015
Matt Turner/Flickr

A covered wagon pulled by a yoke of oxen appeared on the path in front of us. Nearby several young children walked by on stilts, a brass band tuned up for an outdoor concert and the Mississippi River rolled along, glittering in the sunshine. That’s when my husband and I knew that our visit to historic Nauvoo was a trip back in time.

Illinois State Geological Survey- Sam Panno

During one of the heavy rains this summer, a motorist in Pike County was killed when he drove into an area of roadway that had collapsed.   A couple of years ago, a golfer in southwestern Illinois escaped serious injury when the ground collapsed underneath him and sent him into a 20 ft. crevice.     They were both the result of sinkholes, which can occur naturally in some parts of Illinois and can occur elsewhere due to man made causes.


The National Park Service has added the 1840s-era Strawbridge-Shepherd House to its National Register of Historic Places. The Sangamon County home was restored by the Elijah Iles House Foundation and is located on the southern edge of the University of Illinois Springfield campus. It was officially listed on June, 8, 2015.

James Welt, who graduated from UIS in May with a master’s degree in history, led the effort to have the house added to the registry. He spent more than 200 hours researching and writing a proposal, which was submitted to the National Park Service.

Illinois Department of Natural Resources

A new report details urban flooding problems in Illinois.  The report from the Department of Natural Resources says damage from urban flooding (flooding on higher ground outside a flood plain) cause more than $2 billion worth of damage between 2007-2014 in Illinois.

Officials with Mitsubishi Motors aren't confirming Japanese media reports saying the automaker will stop making vehicles at its central Illinois factory and try to sell the plant.  

Mitsubishi spokesman Dan Irvin based in Normal wouldn't comment beyond saying the company continually reviews its supply chain to make sure it remains competitive.  

Japan's leading business newspaper, the Nikkei, reported the news. Kyodo News also reported the plant will close. Both cited unnamed sources.  

Rachel Otwell/WUIS

Springfield Mayor Jim Langfelder is approaching three months in office.  He unseated Mike Houston and took over the role his own father, Ossie Langfelder, held for two terms - from 1987 to 1995. While the new mayor hasn't been in office long - he's had time to make appointments, and is working on initiatives like high speed rail, wind energy, and residential development downtown. He spoke with us about all that and more - and starts this interview telling us how the transition of administrations has been so far:  

commons/wikimedia/Public Domain

It was 100 years ago this week that one of Chicago's most tragic events occurred.  844 people died in a horrific scene along the Chicago River.And yet, most have never heard of the Eastland Disaster.

Jason and Jamie Parrott

The mayor of Quincy says his city will remain under a state of emergency for the time being after it was struck by a strong thunderstorm.  

Mayor Kyle Moore said Tuesday that the main streets in Quincy are blocked with fallen trees and live wires. He says those streets should be passable by Wednesday morning and neighborhood streets later in the week.  

A powerful thunderstorm with winds as high as 70 mph tore through the Quincy area Monday night damaging homes and knocking out power to tens of thousands in Adams County.  

Hermann Tourism Office

The town of Hermann, Missouri is located approximately 180 miles away from Springfield, Illinois. 

In our latest midwest travel segment, Mary Bohlen wrote about the town with strong German heritage for Illinois Times. 

She tells WUIS' Sean Crawford there is a lot to see and do, but it's not necessarily a family destination.

Overhead view of CWLP and the Dallman Station.
Google Maps

Local conservationists have long been concerned with various issues surrounding the utility City, Water, Light, And Power and the effect it has on Lake Springfield and the environment. Illinois is one of the most coal-producing states, but even the Springfield mayor is pushing for changes.

University of Illinois Chicago

Springfield residents wanting the city to create "quiet zones" along the Third Street rail corridor want to see some action soon.  Bill Wheelhouse talks with the leader of a petition effort to get changes made on Third Street in order for trains to cut back on whistle blowing.

Giorgio Niro / UIS Alumni magazine

Every day brings news about the Middle East, and its complex political, religious and economic systems.


Time flies when you're doing good things.  The Young Philanthropists in central Illinois Springfield is marking its 10th year.  

The Community Foundation For The Land Of Lincoln approached people who were interested in philanthropy, but had not started. That's according to the Foundation's Vice President of Programs Stacy Reed. 

"It's just a way for people to pool their resources," she said. "Everyone contributes $125 to an endowment fund."

The Cleveland Cavaliers changed tactics again, attacking small-ball Golden State Warriors lineups with size, but got the same result in Tuesday's Game 6 of the NBA Finals as in the previous two games: Within two points at the half, they wore down as the game went on, and lost 105-97.

Public Domain

Union members have long been at odds with government in Illinois. They have come out attacking both Democrats and Republicans alike for measures to cut or freeze benefits as the state grapples with its billions of dollars of debt. One historical figurehead in the movement for workers' rights is still highly lauded - Mary Harris Jones, aka Mother Jones

Springfield aldermen turned down a plan to use tax increment financing to help develop a downtown student housing project.  The city council unanimously rejected the idea to give 700-thousand dollars.